"Where then is thy glorying? It is excluded. By what law? Of deeds doing? Nay, but by the law of faith. For we deem a man to be justified by faith, without works of the law." - Romans 3:27-28 (Wycliffe NT)


"Anytime the Christian makes sense in a Bible study or sermon, you can almost bet your life you're not hearing Christianity."
Pastor Tom Baker



Why does God require faith? It is the way we have relationship with Him. But what is faith? Faith is a living trust that you employ not only towards God but also in other relationships in your life. You trust that those around you truly love you even though you couldn't really know what they might think. The heart is beyond wicked and the mind is full of every nasty thing. There is no way to truly know the state of someone else's heart and there isn't a way to even know your own. It is a chameleon, changing with the times. The heart and mind both work together pulling one another into spirals of self. We start believing our heart and yet our mind knows what the heart is feeling. We have a refreshed mind but our heart is carrying us away leaving behind our good sense. What a ghastly trick this is. With our hearts and mind constantly ebbing and flowing, we can only have one thing and that is faith. Faith in our relationships keep hope alive that all is well. We certainly muster faith for our worldly relationships for we know that our hearts are deceitful but we know Christ's heart is all loving. Jesus doesn't want us to muster our own kind of faith for Him. We need His faith. This is a difficult concept to envision but allows a peaceful rest if we can begin to understand it. For every problem, He offers the solution. He gives us faith for Him.

We don't create faith. As all good gifts come from the Lord, He also provides us the faith that trusts Him and His goodness. Not ours. You see, God gives us everything we need in Christ. We need not pray for more of this or that. We already have it. I don't believe that God is a vending machine only giving us small portions here and there. I believe He's given it all in one complete work as we come to Him. Our problem is not realizing that we already HAVE IT. We don't believe this because we don't see our lives exhibiting these things. At least not consistently. This shouldn't lead us to believe that on the days we are patient or fully compassionate or slow to anger that we are in any different place than in Christ even on the days we aren't those things! Those things exist in us because of His gift to us. We have misplaced our trust when we are exhibiting these behaviors.

What shall we do then? We faithe. This is not even a word! But there is an active faith that we must employ. Yes, Christ has given us full capacity for faith. Perfect faith. Yet, we don't allow it to work every day. We live in this untrusting flesh. So we must faithe. We must remind ourselves of His righteousness in our life. We don't fall before Him humiliated that we blew it and ask Him to dole out another dose of something. We renew our minds and faithe, actively trusting Him that He has completed us. I've heard before - "God's not finished with me yet!" This usually means God is sculpting us into better Christians. I'm not so sure of this. I believe the Creator of the universe, the God man who dies for us and rises to give us life, HAS sculpted us into what He wants. We are just so much more interested in what He can do for us than what His Son already did. We are too fleshly to see it. We still see the unmolded clay, clumped around us instead of seeing the pot that is filled with Christ. But this must be what keeps our faith alive - our trust in hope. We would certainly fall prostrate to see the completeness of Christ's glory. We must rest in faith continually - faithing - so that we know our completeness is true even though we don't always see it.


Riviera Boardwalk said...

I am not sure I completely understood your message regarding faith. But I love the Lord and can remember as far back as the age of 2 and I just turned 63 and cannot remember a day in my life when I didn't know God. I was Baptized at age 12 by Dr. Kyle Yates from Baylor University. I ended up graduating from that Baptist university at age 28, divorced, with two little pre-schoolers at home. My life has been tough at times but a full one. I raised my son's first born and am raising my daughter's first born who is 17 and her name is Brooke. If you were to ask her she would say she is raising me right now because I have 3rd stage lung cancer. Yesterday I started a stronger, new chemo. The chemo I was on was not shrinking my tumor so I am on a new one. I stumbled upon your wife's blog and now your's. I have a blog too and mine is like her's. I have signed up as a follower.
Love to you and your's In Christ,

Trent said...

Welcome to the blog and thanks for following! I grew up Baptist as well and was baptized at age 8, I believe and was raised in church and my dad was a Sunday school teacher. Over the last few years I've gone through a bit of a reformation and it inspired me to start this blog. The name of it is very important - It is finished - because I've come to realize that Christ did something so outstanding at the cross that the mind has trouble grasping it. Growing up, we concentrated almost all of our energy into making sure we behaved and tried our best to not sin. Of course we failed pretty miserably but we did try. That is not to say that practicing good behavior isn't necessary in life but I ended up with a view that I would fall out of fellowship with God each time I sinned. This would send me spinning into a vicious circle each time where I would do the bad thing, feel bad about it and then ask God to forgive me for it. The problem was that this happened daily! But recently, as I've grown in understanding, I came across those words He said from the cross, "It is finished!" and I began to see that He truly accomplished something for me on that cursed tree. He killed sin. He took all of these bad things I do or will ever do and He wiped them away. Judged them once and for all. He did judge me as sinful, no doubt. But as He rose He was able to give me something I didn't have before and that is life! Now I understand that I am forgiven, I need no more forgiveness. He has given me life. I'm alive! My eternity with Him started when I was given faith. There is no barrier between myself and God anymore. He removed the sin barrier and I have full access to Him despite my inclination to sin. I realized another important thing, that when God looks at me, He doesn't see my sin, He sees His Son in me. This was a beautiful truth I learned that I wasn't brought up believing. I hope that I can encourage others to see what truly happens in our life when we become Christians. If you think anyone else could benefit from this blog, please pass it along.
I would encourage you in your situation with cancer that you are complete in Christ despite what your body tells you. He has perfected you. Rest in His love for you. Please keep me updated on how everything is going. In Christ, Trent